As a blogger, you likely receive a ton of emails. Everyone from affiliate managers to online retailers to other bloggers has something you need to know about. Now. Here are some of my favorite email management tips for bloggers to keep you from being buried in your inbox.
Use More Than One Email Address
For awhile I was running almost everything through my main email address and things quickly got out of hand. I now have a domain email set up for each site I own, an email I direct all of my affiliate program communications through, a “testing” email for more potential spam-type stuff, an email strictly for my online shopping and an email strictly for personal correspondence. I know exactly where to find stuff and I know exactly which emails need monitored and those that can go unattended for awhile if necessary. And if you use Gmail or Google Apps for Work, you can monitor more than one account at once. (Need a coupon code for Google Apps for Work? Use 4YAL46RJ4QMLYG or 4U44X7R69LEGHX to receive $10 off per user for the first year.)
Gmail offers a great labeling system that will allow you to color-code or folder incoming emails for processing later. This is a great way to organize things like guest post inquiries, client work, affiliate or sponsored post projects and more. Once they are batched up, you can run through everything in each category in no time.
I don’t know what I would do without the ready-to-send responses I have saved for common inquiries – besides waste a lot of time. If you receive frequent inquiries about advertising, guest posting, job openings, etc. craft a response that can be saved as a Draft for easy insertion. This saves so much time! If you aren’t good at those things, I did spot some email templates available on Etsy for Etsy shop owners and photographers. I believe some of these can be modified to suit your needs.
There is a great post from Leo Babauta on Four Hour Workweek that explains Inbox Zero in plain English, “Open each email and dispose of it immediately. Your choices: delete, archive (for later reference), reply quickly (and archive or delete the message), put on your to-do list (and archive or delete), do the task immediately (if it requires 2 minutes or less — then archive or delete), forward (and archive or delete). Notice that for each option, the email is ultimately archived or deleted. Get them out of the inbox.” Good time to put those templates to use, wouldn’t you say?
Our ultimate goal as bloggers is to get visitors on our email lists. There is a good chance you are on a ton of lists from bloggers and online retailers. If you are no longer shopping there or they are not providing you with ongoing great content, unsubscribe. If all a blogger is sending you is their latest blog posts, you can follow them on Bloglovin’ or Feedly and get the same information without having to clog up your email.
Zapier is an awesome automation tool that can help bloggers with so many tasks. When it comes to your inbox, Zapier can do everything from delete emails to add them to a to-do list to saving attachments. They even have an entire blog post full of great Gmail tips here.
Get a Sidekick
I love, love, LOVE Sidekick by Hubspot. If I have something important or time-sensitive that I’m emailing to someone, Sidekick will let me know when they open it and how many times they opened it. This is especially important when I’m sending out guest post or joint venture partnership inquiries to other bloggers or media contacts. Rather than wondering if they ever saw my email and whether I should move on or wait, I now know if they are ignoring me so I can move on down the line and not bother them in the future with other opportunities. I can also schedule emails to be sent at a later time and get a lot of information about a recipient such as their social media profiles, mutual connections and more.
I’d love to hear your email management tips in the comments.